When Public Discourse Mirrors Academic Debate: Research Integrity in the Media

  • Ilaria AmpolliniEmail author
  • Massimiano Bucchi
Original Research/Scholarship


Most studies of research integrity in the general media focus on the coverage of specific cases of misconduct. This paper tries to provide a more general, long-term perspective by analysing media discourse about research integrity and related themes in the Italian and United Kingdom daily press from 2000 to 2016. The results, based on a corpus of 853 articles, show that media coverage largely mirrors debates about integrity and misconduct. In fact, salient themes in the news include the importance to overcome the so-called “rotten apple” paradigm; the key role of public trust in science; and the need to address flaws in the peer-review system.


Research integrity Scientific misconduct Media analysis Science communication Daily press 



Research for this paper has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme, under Grant Agreement No. 665926 (PRINTEGER).


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© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Sociology and Social ResearchUniversity of TrentoTrentoItaly

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